Citi Center for Financial Literacy
Financial literacy can broadly be defined as “providing familiarity with and understanding of financial market products, especially rewards and risks, in order to make informal choices. Viewed from this stand point, financial education primarily relates to personal finance to enable individuals to take effective action to improve overall well being and avoid distress in matter that are financial”.
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has defined financial education as “the process by which financial consumers/investors improve their understanding of financial products, concepts and risks, and through information, instructions and/or objective advise, develop the skills and confidence to become more aware of financial risks and opportunities, to make informed choices, to know where to go for help, and to take other effective actions to improve their financial well being.
Thus financial literacy is the ability to know, monitor and effectively use financial resources to enhance the well being and economic security of oneself, one’s family and business, and also for improving the understanding of the financial service providers. In our case, our focus of financial literacy will be SHG members and their families and all other organizations who are involved with them. This includes Bankers, Panchayat members as well.
The concept of Financial Literacy, is essentially spreading the knowledge of good money management practices. It encompasses all monetary transactions that a person enters into such as earning, spending, saving, borrowing and investing. These transactions cannot be avoided and they are all integral parts of a person's life, and hence the introduction of financial literacy will help people, especially women to manage these transactions to their advantage. With financial literacy, poor will have opportunity to learn skills related to,
a) setting economic goals,
b) making a financial plan,
c) managing cashflow,
d) minimizing debt,
e) planning for future. and also
f) socially responsible actions without jeopardizing the economic conditions
The Citi Centre for Financial Literacy (CCFL) is one of the core wing of the school established in September’2005 with the ideology of disseminating financial literacy, amongst poor, specially women, by building their knowledge, awareness and skill for enabling them to avail financial services and manage their personal finance efficiently. The CCFL functions from the Ahmadabad office with the support of regional centres. The activities of CCFL also expand in the other state with NAFiL partners. The prime activity of CCFL is to share the concept of the financial literacy across the country, with the estimated outreach of 500,000 stakeholders from 89 Micro Finance organizations, out of which 400000 are Self Help Groups.
Concept Sharing Workshop is an important activity of CCFL and generally conducted with the key functionaries of the organization. It is usually conducted for two days and covers the major component of financial literacy with approximate of 25 participants. This concept sharing workshop is a discussion forum, where participants are gained knowledge about the subject and provide necessary suggestions for effective training for field level officials.
Mass Awareness Campaigning is also another key activity of spreading financial literacy among masses. It is a one day programme and aimed to introduce the subject among grass root beneficiaries in a particular area. It results into a clear understanding about the area of emphasis and the degree of emphasis required for bringing about the desired change. These campaigns are conducted in an audio visual mode and usually reach out towards 800 populations.
Training of Trainers on financial literacy: In order to provide the knowledge on personal financial management, financial inclusion and explain various financial products and services this five days training programme were organize with various stakeholders like NGOs, Bankers, SHGs, individuals and MFI for enhancing their capacity on same. Rigorous efforts were made to introduce innovative participatory training methodology to make the training effective for the participants.